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Rogue and Pyro

X-Men Legends
by yo go re

Love it when these multi-packs have a clear and concise theme, like, uh... "characters who breathe"?

From the day an innocent kiss rendered her boyfriend comatose, Rogue has grappled with the ramifications of her mutant ability. The great weight of countless absorbed psyches was finally lifted by a treasured infant known as the "Mutant Messiah," leaving Rogure with hope for a future where she can finally control her great power.

And eventually she did! Turns out the reason she was never able to control her ability was because absorbing that boyfriend (and Carol Danvers) partitioned her mind before she fully had control, leaving her stuck in the early stages - a little psychic surgical repair cleared that right up, making her finally able to touch people, which is why she's fine showing a little bit of skin in this costume. Of course, it's not as much skin as the first time they were going to make this costume, but after all these years, a patch of bare skin on Rogue's upper arms might as well be "fully nude." Like a glimpse of ankle on an old-timey bathing suit.

This costume is basically a green minidress with leggings and opera gloves. It's got white trim leading to X logos on the chest and shoulders, and she wears it with a thick white belt that has a large pouch over each hip and another X-logo in the center. The ensemble is completed with a long white scarf. The figure is based on the same body as the previous Rogues, but with a smaller chest - must be one hell of a zipper holding that top closed! The skirt part of the dress is a separate piece that's been glued on. The thighs are new, too, because the upper edges of her boots are molded on, not just extra pieces like we've seen elsewhere.

Rogue wears her hair in a ponytail, and you get your choice of heads for her: one smiling sweetly, the other clearly very angry, with her teeth bared and her nose crinkled. I know some fans would have been unhappy if we'd only gotten the more dynamic look, so including options was a nice choice. Right out of the box she's got fists, but you can swap those for splayed fingers.

St.John Allerdyce of Sydney, Australia, has two careers: he is a successful novelist and a remarkable superhero. As Pyro, he is able to control and manipulate flames in his immediate vicinity. Convinced by Mystique to join the infamous Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, Pyro battled the X-Men on a number of occasions. He ultimately switched from villain to hero when the mutant Brotherhood was transformed into the US-sanctioned Freedom Force.

Oh, right, I guess both these characters were introduced in relation to Mystique. Still not a very good theme for a pairing. Unless we later get a set of Destiny and Avalanche or something. It's been 14 years since we got a Pyro action figure, so it's not like this is at all unwelcome, it's just strange that these two specific characters were chosen to be paired up, when they have no particular history together. We'd give you another example of how odd it is, but it's hard to come up with any two characters more random than Rogue and Pyro.

Pyro uses the larger superarticulated body, which is okay for him - he's not a physical fighter, so they probably could have gotten away with even the skinner one (presumably they went with one that has pec hinges so he can aim his powers forward, like Iceman). The triangular red chestpiece is a separate mold that fits over the shoulders and plugs into his back. The backpack that holds his fire-starting equipment is detailed simply, matching the comic art, and the two tubes that run from it attach to rings that fit onto his wrists. Unlike ToyBiz's Pyro, Hasbro's has the right colors: red, yellow, and orange, not tan. An improvement already!

Another theme of this set is "we're giving the character two heads." The one on the neck in the package has a bit of a smug smile, while the alternate one has an even bigger grin. No, he's not happy and reassuring, he's just enjoying being a violent, dangerous man. The advantage of everything being sculpted digitally these days is that both heads can have identical eyes and hair, with just the mouth and cheeks needing to be different between them.

2020 Pyro gets the accessories 2006 Pyro didn't: flames. They're existing molds, which have been done as fire before, but this time they're translucent plastic rather than solid. The nozzles on his tubes don't fit with the accessories too well, but you can find a pose where they'll work. And then you'll have a Pyro who can set things on fire!

There's no logical reason for Hasbro to sell Rogue and Pyro together in one set, but does that matter? No. Once they're in your display and the package is in the recycling bin, who's ever going to remember how they were sold? Rogue is a new design and Pyro was desperately in need of an update. Sounds like a good set to me.

-- 12/24/20

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